Benefits Of Anti Harassment Policies: 4 Advantages At The Workplace

The once-taboo subject, workplace harassment, is now gaining its limelight as more and more people in modern times decided to become vocal about their struggles and how to fight them. In simpler terms, the word harassment refers to conduct that remains intended to irritate or disturb someone, for instance, repeated denunciations of them or trying to cause them problems. 

Also, harassment can occur anywhere, and the organizations are no different. Workplace harassment happens when someone in a company orally or physically attacks someone because of their color, race, gender, religion, community, age, and disability. 

More importantly, workplace harassment practices distort relationships and can be pretty toxic in a workplace as the participation of every employee is a must to attain the organization’s objectives. Hence to counter this problem from causing further damage, every modern organization needs to train its workforce about harassment prevention.

Getting Harassed at the Workplace: What Does it Mean?

Solid evidence of workplace harassment may or may not exist with the victim; hence, it is beneficial to maintain substantial knowledge of what is going on with you in the workplace when discussing it with the supervisors. 

Also, derogatory puns, discriminatory comments, name-calling, epithets, vehement harm or intimidations, roast or belittlement, curses or put-downs, unacceptable objects or images, and interference with work execution are all instances of inappropriate workplace behavior, according to the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). 

In addition, harassment at the workplace can take place in various circumstances, including the following:

  • The harassment perpetrator could be the sufferer’s manager, a supervisor in another unit, a colleague, an employer’s advisor, or a client.
  • The sufferer does not have to be the harassed person; any individual affected by the offensive conduct might be the victim.
  • Harassment at work may happen without causing monetary harm to the sufferer or making the victim’s job to get revoked. 

Therefore, it is crucial to understand when employers are getting harassed at the workplace. Moreover, workplace harassment is a grave concern with several uncertainties. So, you must report workplace harassment or wrongdoing even if you are a witness. 

What are the Principal Purposes of Anti-Harassment Policies?

Here are some of the purposes of anti-harassment policies. 

  • Prevention: It requires a single harassment claim to terminate a working relationship permanently. In addition, a harassment complaint can create tension between the harassed and harasser, impacting their productivity. Therefore, to prevent this from happening, it is crucial to have solid anti-harassment policies that make your workforce aware of the different forms of harassment and the best ways to deal with them. 
  • Promote Inclusivity: Anti-harassment policies can assist the organization to remain more sensitive to the workplace diversity they belong to. In addition, by being aware of the possible consequences of their operations, workers can be more sensitive to the differences of the individuals they are working with within the organization.
  • It works as an affirmative defense: Anti-harassment policies work as a basis of a long-term purpose – a harassment-free work environment. With continuous practice and re-training, your organization will be able to create a positive defense and build an atmosphere that remains free from the toxicity of the outcomes of workplace harassment.

What are the Top Advantages of Anti-Harassment Policies?

Mentioned hereunder are some of the top benefits of adopting anti-harassment policies in your workplace. 

  • The workplace atmosphere improves.

Workplace harassment adds to the establishment of a toxic work environment by inducing stress at work. With substantial anti-harassment policies, organizations can ease the distress and fear this creates, guaranteeing a protected working atmosphere that ensures excellence, productivity, and profits.

  • Organizational culture flourishes

Anti-harassment policies reinforce organizational culture and inspire people by communicating its strategies, purposes, and values to its various members. As only one instance of harassment is enough to ruin workplace relationships permanently, avoiding this issue with an anti-harassment policy can strengthen your employee relations. In addition, when your workforce understands the prevalent forms of workplace harassment, they will remain more sensitive when dealing with their colleagues.

  • Anti-harassment policies motivate witnesses to report crimes.

When conventional anti-harassment policies remain in place in a workplace, previously unreported prejudice and harassment will get to the light. People are not the only ones trained about the required and recommended actions in the workplace; witnesses also remain more empowered.

  • The risk of non-compliance reduces 

If your workforce is ignorant and uninformed of workplace harassment issues, your organization is placing itself at constitutional, economic, and professional risk. Anti-harassment policies guard you against the adverse impacts of these factors.

What to Include in Anti-Harassment Policies?

The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) requires organizations to establish intent to limit harassment before it occurs. Also, one of the most suitable methods to accomplish this is to have conventional anti-harassment policies with the below points included. 

  • Protected characteristics

Workplace conduct centered on protected characteristics is more likely to be deemed harassment, and you should avoid it. Therefore, when formulating anti-harassment policies, create a list of protected attributes.

 This list involves color, race, religion, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, and gender identification. In addition, workplace discrimination based on these peculiarities infringes Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

  • Quid Pro Quo

Quid pro quo, also known as this-for-that, is a harassment type that ends in an undesired change. For instance, demotion or skipped promotion, not recruiting, firing, unwanted reassignment, or suspension of the employee getting harassed could be deemed quid pro quo. 

This kind of harassment can happen only from a manager or senior-level officers in an organization and highlights the demand for honest reporting of harassment behavior. Therefore, when drafting anti-harassment policies for your workplace, provisions for quid pro quo shall get a prominent place. Also, you can further contemplate employing a third party to manage harassment cases or conferring the ability to move outside the chain of authority when presenting a claim.

  • Hostile business environment

The purpose of an alleged harasser does not matter. Harassment is seen through the eye of the individual alleging being harassed. Therefore, when drafting anti-harassment policies, 

It is crucial to remember that the harassment prevention policies remain explicit about what is not harassment. 

Sequestered events or offhand remarks are usually not so pervasive that they objectively modify the terms and conditions of your workplace. In addition, the anti-harassment policies must keep an equilibrium between warning employees to the seriousness of filing a harassment claim without frightening the information of rightful claims.

  • Avoid statutory definitions

You’ve presumably confronted anti-harassment policies that cite Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regulations (EEOC). The statutory definitions remain beneficial for lawyers, but it does not present a suitable warning to your workforce without additional context. 

Therefore, in your anti-harassment policies, you must present real-life occurrences of inappropriate conduct that will resonate with the workplace culture. Also, to make it evident, acknowledge that your purpose is not to make any employee uncomfortable but to make them understand what is and is not tolerable so that workers may operate in a pleasant atmosphere. 

The Bottom Line 

After looking at the points above, we can conclude that workplace harassment is one of the most prevalent problems in modern organizations. Such harassment matters affect not only multinational corporations but also small companies. 

Therefore it has become imperative to equip your organizational workforce with anti-harassment training and an efficient anti-harassment policy. Also, by executing a uniform and inclusive anti-harassment policy, companies can avoid monetary and statutory risks and have a toxicity-free workplace.

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